There was a programme on ITV last night, about children with various behavioural and emotional problems. There was a child who seemed plainly to be autistic but couldn't get a diagnosis - and thus no specialist help -, a boy who had suddenly developed Tourettes at the age of 15, and a little girl with selective mutism. I was hoping for more focus on strictly behavioural stuff, but even so, it was very interesting.
The autistic boy, Adam, was in a very frustrating situation. He was apparently very aggressive towards other people most of the time, struggled with communication, etc, and yet all the LA specialists who had seen him felt that although he clearly had lots of problems, he wasn't technically autisitc, and therefore couldn't have a statement. It felt as if the core of the problem was that he couldn't have a place in a special school without the statement, and couldn't get the statement without the diagnosis, but this was never overtly mentioned in the programme.
Katherine, who suffered with selective mutism, was extremely interesting,. She played and talked quite happily at home, but she was extremely anxious about school, and refused to utter a single sound while she was there. You could actually see the poor child's body language change as she got closer to school in the morning. They brought in a SALT to help her, and by the end of several months, they had managed to get her to talk to her teacher and to small groups of children in an empty classroom.
Did anyone else see this? I think the second part is on next week.